Are you planning on taking a vacation or a road trip this month? Even though summer is almost over and school is starting very shortly, there’s still enough time to get away from it all before the daily grind begins again!
While vacationing is supposed to be a fun time to kick back, relax, and take in the surroundings, proper preparation and being armed with sufficient information is key to help you have a safe and enjoyable road trip or vacation! If you’re planning on hitting the road, please keep this travel checklist in mind to help you avoid problems down the road when it comes to both your insurance and you personally!
Get Your Car Checked Out – Before heading out to your destination, no matter how near or far, be sure to take care of your car! Get a tune-up, your oil changed, your tires rotated, and get the rest of your car inspected, especially the air conditioner, tires, battery, fluids, and the belts. Remember, it’s better to have your car looked at and fixed than to take the chance that it could break down in an unfamiliar location!
Make Your Home Thief-Proof – It’s imperative that you take the extra precautions to protect your home while you’re away on vacation. Take the time to stop the mail for the duration of your trip; a mailbox full of mail and a stoop full of newspapers is an obvious indicator to potential thieves that you aren’t home. If you have an alarm system, be sure to arm it while you’re gone, and if you have a trusted friend coming over to take care of your plants or pets, be sure they know how to temporarily deactivate it.
Inform Your Bank of Your Trip – Let your bank know where you’re going and for how long before you leave. Your bank monitors your accounts for any suspicious activity on your cards, so if they see that there are charges to your account being made in another country or even in another state, they are more than likely to shut down your card in order to protect you. Be sure to keep them in the know; they’re there to help YOU!
Notify the Right People of Your Trip – Aside from letting your bank know where you’re going and for how long, it’s a good idea to tell a select amount of friends and family where you’re headed in case of emergency. Also, no matter how badly you might want to post online that you’re going on vacation, do your best to refrain from telling your Facebook and Twitter family about your vacation and when and where you’re going. You never know who could see that information and use it to their advantage!
Get a Good Night’s Sleep – Drowsiness can be a recipe for disaster for you and your family on the road. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), driving while drowsy is a contributing factor in 100,000 accidents annually. Be sure you get to bed earlier the night before your departure and be packed beforehand so you can rest more soundly.
Do Your Research – Before heading out on vacation, do your best to do some research on where you’re going, especially in cities. Know the crime rate, which places are good to be in and which places you need to avoid at all costs, and be prepared for the unexpected to happen. Try to avoid leaving atlases, guidebooks, money, and valuables in plain sight in your parked car, and keep your car locked and secured at all times.
Pack the Right Things – As tempting as it might be to just grab your swimsuit, towel, and the clothes on your back and take off might be, it’s important to pack the right things on your trip. Make a list first of all the things you will need on your trip. Remember the obvious needs such as your clothing, shoes, and socks, and don’t forget other necessary items such as toiletries, camera and batteries, chargers, deodorant, shampoo, and toothbrushes and floss. You can always create your own checklist here!
Be Smart on the Road – Road trips are meant to be experience with a sense of exuberance and freedom, but not being properly prepared can quickly kill the mood. Keep your phone charged in case of roadside emergencies, and be sure that your children are properly buckled in your car. Before leaving, don’t forget to pack the following in an emergency kit: water, a flashlight, jumper cables, warm blankets, flares, a first-aid kit, and tools to change a tire.
Make Sure Your Insurance is Up-To-Date – What better time to come in and visit us than before taking a vacation or road trip? Please remember to stop by our office for a visit to ensure that your auto insurance is up-to-date before hitting the road! We can review your policy and help you identify if you need to update any information or not. You can also review your home and life insurance policies while you’re here.
If you have any questions about how to have a memorable and relaxing vacation or if you’re interested in reviewing your insurance policy, feel free to contact us! Stop by our office for a visit, call us at 1-800-766-MMIC, or visit us online at www.madisonmutual.com. We are dedicated to providing you superior service and putting your troubles at ease!